From coronavirus to hypercar: Catching up with ByKolles Racing

ByKolles Racing at Le Mans

ByKolles Racing will start 2021 with its own WEC Hypercar. We spoke to Team Manager Boris Bermes about the new car.

WM: What does your development schedule look like for the new hypercar? Has it been much different from the LMP1 process?

BB: The development period has been similar to our LMP1 car. We have been working on the car for around two years, starting with some initial ideas and concepts. Once the drawings and sketches were complete we were able to start on the construction and aerodynamic work. We start building the car around five months before the start of the season and carried out the necessary safety tests. One month before the first race we will finalise the car and complete the roll-out.

WM: When you revealed more details about the car at Le Mans, there wasn’t much information about the engine in your hypercar. Are any further details available?

BB: Our hypercar doesn’t have a hybrid system, and we will be opting for a normally aspirated engine to achieve the performance curve provided for by the regulations. 

WM: Toyota and also Peugeot further down the line will be running a hybrid system. Do you not think that will put you at a disadvantage?

BB: I don’t think so. Unlike previous regulations, the 2021 ruleset includes an excellent balance of performance system with a range of performance windows. We think the system is well designed and should be able to absorb differences between hybrid and non-hybrid hypercars.

Team Manager Boris Bermes

WM: In Le Mans you unveiled your hypercar under the title PMC Project LMH. What’s behind the name?

BB: This was the name of the hypercar development project. PMC is the name of the company who shares responsibility for developing and manufacturing the carbon fibre parts for the car. ByKolles will be responsible for further development and for running the car.

WM: The coronavirus pandemic has thrown the world off its axis. Do you have a contingency plan for 2021 if there are any further restrictions?

BB: The situation is extremely difficult all over the world. I think the 2021 calendar can only be seen as a draft plan really. It is hard to plan for the races and it remains to be seen if they will all take place as planned. We will make every effort to run through our 2021 hypercar project as it is on paper and look forward to getting out on track with the car. Our focus is on Le Mans, of course, and we saw that the race is possible even in a pandemic in 2020.